November 4, 2022 | Article

The Network Law Review featured a guest article by expert Prof. Daniel Spulber discussing the FTC's complaint to block Illumina's proposed acquisition of Grail. He argues that the approach taken by the FTC's complaint should not guide antitrust policy toward vertical mergers.


Illumina is significant because it illustrates emerging Antitrust law and policy toward vertical mergers. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sought to block Illumina’s proposed acquisition of Grail. Chief Administrative Law Judge D. Michael Chappell issued an Initial Decision that dismissed the FTC Complaint against the vertical merger. The FTC Complaint in Illumina indicates how Antitrust policy may challenge vertical mergers on the basis of expected effects on innovation. The Initial Decision in Illumina shows that there are potential problems associated with implementing the FTC’s changing Antitrust policies toward vertical mergers. I argue that the approach taken by the FTC’s Complaint should not guide Antitrust policy toward vertical mergers.

The full guest article is available here.

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the authors, who are responsible for the content, and do not necessarily represent the views of Vega Economics. For more information about Prof. Spulber, please email

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